Feb 12, 2013 10:00am EST
of so many people guest: let me mention just a few of them. hadiya pendleton, and understood in an inspiration to our friends, all walking angel her cousin called her. she was taken from us two weeks ago. her family is here today a student at northern illinois university, with a warm heart and bright future, murdered in her classroom by a man with a history of mental illness. her mother is here today. blaire holt killed while shielding his friends from a gang members spraying fire on a city bus. his friend is here today marcus norris, hit in the face by a bullet that came through the wall of his house. thank god he survived. we are glad to have him here today. a true american hero who dedicated his life to serving his country and his community, killed by gang members with a straw purchase gone. i attended his funeral service. the officer's family is here, and his sister will testify today. there are many more in this room today whose lives and families have been changed by gun violence. i would like to ask the friends and family of the victims of gun violence to please stand.
Feb 15, 2013 10:30pm EST
side. [applause] last weekend she came home but it was to attend the funeral of hadiya pendleton. and hadiya's parents, by the way, are here and i want to acknowledge them. they are just wonderful, wonderful people. [applause] as you know this week in my state of the union i talked about hadiya on tuesday night. and the fact that, unfortunately, what happened to hadiya is not unique. it's not unique to chicago, it's not unique to this country. too many of our children are being taken away from us. two months ago, america mourned 26 innocent first-graders and their educators in newtown. and today i had the high honor of giving the highest civilian award i can give to the parents -- or the families of the educators who had been killed in newtown. and there was something profound and uniquely heartbreaking and tragic, obviously, about a group of 6- year-olds being killed. but last year there were 434 murders with a firearm on the streets of this city, and 65 of those victims were 18 and under. so that's the equivalent of a newtown every four months. and that's precisely why the over
Feb 13, 2013 1:00am EST
lives by a bullet from a gun. one of those we lost was a young girl named hadiya pendleton. she was 15 years old. she loved fig newtons and lip gloss. she was a majorette. she was so good to her friends, they all thought they were her best friend. just three weeks ago, she was here, in washington, with her classmates, performing for her country at my inauguration. and a week later, she was shot and killed in a chicago park after school, just a mile away from my house. hadiya's parents, nate and cleo, are in this chamber tonight, along with more than two dozen americans whose lives have been torn apart by gun violence. they deserve a vote. gabby giffords deserves a vote. the families of newtown deserve a vote. the families of aurora deserve a vote. the families of oak creek, and tucson, and blacksburg, and the countless other communities ripped open by gun violence -- they deserve a simple vote. our actions will not prevent every senseless act of violence in this country. indeed, no laws, no initiatives, no administrative acts will perfectly solve all the challenges i've outlined tonigh